Building standards and regulations
6 Star Energy Rating
All new homes, renovations, alterations and additions in Victoria need to comply with a 6 Star Standard.
New houses are required to include a greater range of energy efficiency and water saving features to reduce the cost of energy bills. Some exemptions may apply for houses with timber sub floor constructions, mud brick and relocatable houses.
Further information is available from the Victorian Building Authority on 1300 815 127, or contact council's building department on (03) 5772 0333.
Bushfire Prone Areas and Bushfire Attack Levels
Extensive state-wide mapping has been undertaken to designate bushfire prone areas (BPA). All new homes considered to be in a BPA must comply with Australian Standard 3959 which includes requirements such as:
- Distance to fire source (vegetation)
- Vegetation type
- Wall and roof materials adopted
- Protection of window and door openings
- Protection of sub-floor or lower perimeter
- Your designer will need to ensure that all relevant information regarding bushfire exposure, construction levels and external materials are indicated on building plans to show compliance with the Standards. This should be done prior to applying for a building permit.
Your site will need to be inspected and a Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) determined. This inspection can be carried out by a building surveyor, owner, architect, building designer or builder.
Once a BAL assessment has been completed, you can then design your building based on the BAL requirements and apply for a building permit.
To comply with the Australian Standard all new homes constructed in a BPA must be built to a minimum BAL of 12.5 to help withstand ember attack. To find out whether your property is located in a designated BPA visit www.land.vic.gov.au where you can access the interactive map service.
Construction of new buildings and additions are required to be protected against termites in accordance with Australian Standard 3660. Termites cause more damage to Australian homes every year than any other natural disaster.
Information about termite management is available from the Victorian Building Authority website at www.vba.vic.gov.au or contact Council’s Building Unit on (03) 5772 0333.